A number of legislators, civil-rights lobbyists, and feminist writers are pushing harder than ever for the repeal of U. S. laws barring women from combat.1 They insist that the average female recruit scores higher than her male counterpart on the Armed Forces Qualifying Test, and that women can participate in combat, an arena that has become—on the surface-—more technical and less physical. They contend that because women are inherently no less adept than men at flying jets, driving tanks, conning ships, or other combat skills that do not require great strength, it is appropriate to include them in U.S. fighting units—in fact, not to include them is to deny them a civil right.
1. 'Section 6015, Title 10, U. S. Code.
2. 'For a discussion of unit cohesion see R. Gabriel and P. Savage, Crisis in Command: Mismanagement in the Army (New York: Hill and Wang, 1978), pp. 31-32.
3. Gray, The Warriors: Reflections on Men in Battle (New York: Harper and Row, 1959), p. 45. 45
4. S. Cropsey, "Women in Combat?" The Public Interest 6/, Fall 1980, p. 69.
5. G. Gilder, "The Sexual Revolution at Home," National Review, 10 October 1986, p. 31.
6. See R. Spillane, "Women in Ships: Can We Survive?" Proceedings, July 1987, pp. 43-46.
7. M. Segal, "The Argument for Women in Combat," in N. Goldman, ed., Female Soldiers: Combatants or Noncombatants? (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1982), p. 273.
8. Clausewitz entitled Chapter VII, Book 1, of On War "Friction in War."